Managing Partner Philip Gordon was a guest on WBIX-AM’s “Money Matters” Show with host Barry Armstrong, on September 8, 2006. The segment discussed Massachusetts Wage and Labor Law and a bill designed to protect workers employers who withhold wages, salaries and benefits, and protect law-abiding business from the resulting unfair competition.
From the interview:
Armstrong: “Can you explain what this new wage and labor bill sets out to do?”
Gordon: “The bill puts the teeth back into a 1993 law protecting wages that was the subject of a controversial decision by our state supreme court last summer. The bill requires employers who skip payroll to pay those employees 3 times the amount of the missed wages. The problem is that when employees miss their wages, they have tough decisions to make about paying rent or mortgage, medical care, taxes, food, tuition. The idea is not to punish employers for missing payroll, just to compensate employees for their suffering.”
Armstrong: “What types of compensation does it cover?”
Gordon: “It covers wages. That’s really just about anything an employee earns – hourly pay, salary, commissions, bonuses, benefits, vacation, overtime.”
Armstrong: “What about employers that make an honest mistake?”
Gordon: “It’s tough to make a mistake with payroll. You hire the employees, you set their hours, you set their pay rate, and you know when payroll is due. If you take it seriously, how do you mess that up? But, let’s say you somehow missed a payroll. Most employees won’t file a lawsuit if you apologize and make it up. Keep in mind that to get the triple damages, the employee has to file a law suit.”